Grounds Guys Franchise

Discussion in 'Franchising' started by sharpcuts, Oct 26, 2011.

  1. littledaveslandscape

    littledaveslandscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Grounds guys wasn't a fit for us. I had a guy named Joseph that contacted me to come check them out. It was a fun trip to visit a new part of the US but that's about all I got out of it. I got down there and it is cool to listen to the future they say you can have that's unrealistic as hell. I started my company 11 years ago and last year I got to a point where I was fed up and wanted to throw it away. I felt like the hand I was delt was the worst ever. I felt alone and then they called and I felt a ray of hope. Honestly just going listening to a bunch of idiots that had no past experience with landscaping made me realize that I was doing ok. It was sort of a reality check for me. While I was in Waco I met a good guy named Sam. His wife was pregnant and he was a ft fireman and he wanted to brand his company and blah blah. I told him he better think good and hard because it's a life decision if you work for the money you have. It may be different if someone gave you money and was like here's a franchise go run it. Life simply isn't that easy. So Sam and I kept in touch. He bought a franchise.. and I didn't. I would call him to see what his systems were about that they talked about that were so secretive. Nothing to special. If you know your company worth and if you know how to break down what YOU need to make to survive and make a profit you can make it. I think people think there is a magic recipe and they have only been misled. This guy named Joseph was my franchise consultant. You could tell he needed to sell franchises because he was worse then a car salesman. I got back home and he blew me up everyday. They got my financials and seen that my company actually made good money so of course they preyed on me. They were like vulchers. Sam called me down in the dumps and he said he was 88,000 dollars in credit card debt for the franchise and other fees to go along. They never once spoke of those numbers when I went. I was blew away. He had equipment and he had a business.., so that much money in debt blew me away. I haven't spoke with him in a while but last year at this time he was hurting and he had a new born baby. I couldn't imagine. I've got debt but i pay on that debt and that **** is mine. No one makes money off my company except myself and my workers. I wouldn't recommend them to anyone. I caught them lying to me when I asked about the fees and they gave me a few franchisees to call. I called them and obviously the GG owner Dwyer group gives these people money to fill people full of ****. I call the list and those people were telling me how great it was and then I called about 30 Franchisees across the US and every damn one of them said don't do it. So that's my two cents. I say give it a try on your own because you sell your lively hood to a bunch of clowns in Texas that have no clue about landscaping. They hire people that have not one damn clue about what a day in the life of a landscaper is about. So take it for what it's worth but I wouldn't and I didn't.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2017
    hort101 and PTP like this.
  2. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,573

    Interesting, there was a GG franchise here in GR for a couple years. Haven't seen them lately so I checked the GG website, no longer listed.

    Kinda tells me something.
  3. RonWin

    RonWin LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 688

    No one will work harder, more hours, act with more care to your equipmemt and customers than the owner of the business themself. A franchise doesnt care about any of that as long as you are sending them their cut of the profit. No successful person wakes up one day amd decides to give up not only equity in their business but also the quality of professionalism that and dedicatiom that got them there in the first place. Dont let scumbag middle men take from you. Arent you disgusted enough with the telemarketers that call you to tell you that youre qualified for a business loan//subscriber to a company that will find you clients? Its the same dmn thing with these franchises. Just tell em to get bent.
  4. MeierLawnCare

    MeierLawnCare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    They were calling me atleast once a week for the last 2 years...even after I told the guy I didn't need help, I can grow as fast as I want or need to, and that I didn't have any desire to do business with or even hear from them again. They kept calling until they caught me on a bad day and I really chewed his @$$ lol...For the life of me I will never understand why people even listen to their pitch! I make plenty of money, and I have no desire to share it with some people who call here telling me how much I need them. I mean really, if I needed you, I would have called YOU, not the other way around. If you bought a vacuum from the door to door guy you'd be getting a better deal...because you're guaranteed to need one eventually LMAO!
    hort101 likes this.
  5. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 1,385

    Dave, (I presume that's your name) you are right.

    You need to think really hard about this decision because it is a one way door. Right now, when your accountant is sloppy, you can get a new one. When your dealer doesn't work with you, you can find another dealer. When your software doesn't meet your needs, you can upgrade. But what happens when you can't? What if the software doesn't work properly but you can't fix it and you are stuck paying a premium for it? What if that great advertising campaign doesn't bring in leads but you have to continue to pay for it anyways? What if you give away some of the control of your business but you still have the same problems as before? If you are not absolutely sure that you are getting what you are paying for, you are probably buying nothing more than the dreams in your own head.

    Here is an idea. Hire a business consultant. They are far cheaper and you still maintain control of the business and the profits as well.

    Yes, I did it. Yes, I regret it.
  6. PicturePerfectLawns

    PicturePerfectLawns LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,554

    I don't have any first hand advice to give you, but I can give you some second hand advice. I bidded against Brickman for a long time, and now I'm in a new state where "US Lawns" just started up. They started with one truck and went to four trucks.I pass by their shop daily, 3 trucks sit parked outside, one working. I continue to laugh at the guy that paid 100k to a franchise, every time I pass his truck I can't help myself, but laughing at the dork. I'd rather not pay someone for a name. Apparently, they did land him some jobs because of the "name." He got one of the biggest contracts in town, next year he will be out-bidded and won't be able to compete with the bid, because of his franchise fee.
  7. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 1,385

    That is very true. I am not in that position myself but I have known of other guys who put it all on the line to make the business work and then it didn't. When you finance your franchise territory, finance new equipment, finance a new truck, but then you can't get the jobs that you were expecting or you can't find/keep the labor you need or that big contract gets canceled, that's pretty much it for you.

    Why do people do that? They have dreams in their head that don't necessarily coincide with reality. They think that the franchise is a kind of fool proof method to build a business but it's not - especially in this business. Yes, franchises are statistically more successful than other startups but when you do fail, it hurts twice as bad.
    hort101 likes this.

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